Saturday, July 12, 2008

The Death of Coral Reefs?

Anyone interested in living in, or traveling to, a tropical paradise, should be depressed by this news.

A third of the world’s coral species are threatened with extinction, according to an international study that revealed rapid and alarming deterioration in the state of coral reefs over the past 10 years.

Many will have disappeared by the end of the century unless global warming, pollution and over-fishing are curbed, warned scientists in the most damning and definitive assessment on tropical corals yet delivered.

This is a very alarming development. My gut reaction is to blame global warming as the primary cause. However, it appears there may be another culprit that could cause even more death among coral species:

But they warn that all of these may be eclipsed by the threat of rising ocean acidity caused by increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide, which could eventually dissolve the calcium carbonate skeletons of reef-building corals.

Of course, reducing CO2 emissions is also a solution to the global warming crisis. I will have more to post on this disconcerting issue in the not too distant future.

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